Bay Port’s Autumn Lakari kicks a ball in the Pirates’ 5-0 victory over Ashwaubenon April 24 (Rich Palzewic photo).
BY RICH PALZEWIC
ASHWAUBENON – The combination of Erika Hess and Emma Nagel is a force to be reckoned with this season.
The duo each scored a pair of goals in Bay Port’s 5-0 Fox River Classic Conference soccer victory over Ashwaubenon April 24 at Ashwaubenon High School.
Clinging to a 1-0 lead after 45 minutes, No. 3 ranked Bay Port scored four second-half goals to win going away.
“The combination of Erika and Emma finding one another on the field right now is something special,” said Bay Port head coach Brooke Mraz, whose team outshot the hosts by a whopping 33-2 margin. “I hope to see it continue and have them build upon that as the season progresses.”
The Pirates improved to 5-0, while the Jaguars were playing in their first game of the season after having their first eight contests postponed/cancelled due to the weather.
“We’ve been a second-half team in the last couple of games,” Mraz said. “That is one thing we need to work on – putting together a complete game. I think we played well in the first half with the number of shots we got off, but we were forcing it down the center a bit too much … kind of in that panic mode. Once we had the opportunity to regroup and relax at halftime, we came out and performed well from there.”
The senior Hess continued her amazing start to the season and now has 12 goals for the year. In her four years playing varsity, she has 61 career goals. Hess would score in the 6th and 81st minutes on assists by Nagel and Alaina Abel respectively.
“Erika is a dominant force right now,” noted Mraz. “She scored 24 goals last year and just the difference so far this season with her is incredible. To put 12 goals in the back of the net this early is phenomenal.”
After some missed opportunities early on, the sophomore Nagel scored her two goals in the 56th and 59th minutes, while Cora Klemme got the other tally in the 83rd minute off another Abel assist. Hess and Nagel also each added assists.
“For a team of Bay Port’s caliber and for us to play a good first half like we did, I was pleased with that,” said Ashwaubenon head coach Rick Kremer. “Bay Port is a dynamite team, but I was proud of how my girls played for the first time out. We moved the ball well, which surprised me a little bit for it being our first game. Our goaltender (Breanna Adamczak) made some great saves. The score might not indicate it, but the goals were more from defensive breakdowns.”
The Pirates also won a 3-0 non-conference road game April 23 over Appleton East, in which Hess scored a pair of goals. The game was scoreless at halftime.
“East is a very sound team with some young talent,” added Mraz. “They came out and played us very tough in the first half, but again, we made a few halftime adjustments with positions. Overall it was a good game against a tough opponent.”